Principal Phobia!!

Discussion in 'General Education' started by SuperBug!, May 13, 2009.

  1. SuperBug!

    SuperBug! Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 13, 2009

    Does anyone out there in teacher land have principal phobia? I have a bad case of it that I don't know if I'll ever shake. I am working my first year in a new district after teaching for five years in my previous district. The main reason for my move is because of my former principal. She was a vindictive, manipulating person who would very purposefully make your life miserable if you did something she didn't approve of. One quick example: I teach special education and changed my schedule at one point in the beginning of the year to better accommodate a teacher. I didn't think I needed approval, but I was wrong. She came into my room and screamed (yes, I mean scream) at me with her finger two inches from my nose about how dare I do this without her permission (in front of a student). So, my schedule went back to the way it was and the teacher did not get the services she needed. Yeah, it was pretty bad, and that's not even one of the worst incidents.

    So now I've noticed throughout the year that I can't help but feel anxiety everytime my new principal approaches me or even walks past my classroom. I mean, I'm talking heart pounding, hand shaking anxiety. I kept thinking it would go away during the year as I get used to the new P and realize that he's not crazy, but just today I spoke to him about something and got the same way. Does anyone else have a phobia about principals, maybe not to the extent of mine but a nervousness about dealing with them? I'm starting to think I'm a real nut job... :p
     
  2.  
  3. Teaching Grace

    Teaching Grace Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,731
    Likes Received:
    3

    May 13, 2009

    I don't think that you're a nut job. I think that you have post-traumatic stress syndrom brought on by a psychotic ex-principal. I say that if you breathe slowly through your attacks and interact with your principal slowly. I think that you just have to let yourself slowly adjust to the fact that you are not being bossed by a crazed individual anymore.
     
  4. INteacher

    INteacher Aficionado

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2007
    Messages:
    3,765
    Likes Received:
    1

    May 13, 2009

    And it helps if you are older than your principal . . . :)

    Seriously though, is there any way you can interact with your principal that is not school related? I don't know what ages you teach but maybe at a school extra-cir. you could begin just chit-chatting with your principal- maybe at a sporting event, band concert, or something else where you are off "teacher-time." Do you have anything in common with your principal? I think if you were able to just have a friendly conversation NOT about school you would be able to work yourself out of your fears.

    Good luck
     
  5. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Messages:
    2,048
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 13, 2009

    Yes. I used to have Principal anxiety for my first 2 years at my school. Partly because I just couldn't read her. I couldn't tell what she really thought about me or if she even thought that I was an asset to the school. I would try to avoid her at all cost. I mean, my first year, I didn't even speak to her (I'm exaggerating a bit but you get the idea). Slowly but surely, I started to lighten up and just say hello as I arrived at school. Although my palms would sweat. Eventually, she would come into my room and leave with a smile, maybe ask me how my day has been. What really helped me to release "some" of the anxiety is the fact that she makes it a point to compliment me when it is warranted. Part of that is contributed to an inservice (workshop) I did at my school for other teachers and she was impressed. I guess I had to prove myself before I could get the love, but it definately gets easier. Hang in there.
     
  6. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2008
    Messages:
    2,489
    Likes Received:
    2

    May 13, 2009

    Superbug, did we teach at the same school? :lol:

    Seriously, my first P was manipulative and sneaky. When I moved to the next school, I never quite trusted her - I was always wondering when her true colors were going to shine through. And it doesn't help that I had AP Moste Evile at the second school, so now I'm terrified of them, too!

    I have no idea how I'll ever make it through an interview without asking the P and AP if they are closet psychos... so I'd have to say you're doing fine :)
     
  7. Yank7

    Yank7 Habitué

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2007
    Messages:
    870
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 13, 2009

    Principals,like all other individuals are different.Some feel they must prove their position by showing they are booss and are mean to all their teachers,
    On the other hand I know some principals who are kind and really care about their teachers and students under their care.
    Judge each as individuals and try to find a situation where you can work with the principal for the good of the children
     
  8. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2006
    Messages:
    27,534
    Likes Received:
    6

    May 13, 2009

    Actually, I really like my principal, as I liked his predecessor.
     
  9. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2007
    Messages:
    17,362
    Likes Received:
    46

    May 13, 2009

    Yep, been there done that. My second year teaching, first year in a new district, the P was a real B. Ever since then, I've been scared to death of any Ps. Makes it hard in interviews!
     
  10. midwestteacher

    midwestteacher Cohort

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    727
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 13, 2009

    Seriously, how can my former principal be all over the country? I swear this story could have been written about that back stabbing, vindictive, evil &**$#.
    After she left, it was also hard for me to become comfortable with the new principal.
    Just hang in there.
     
  11. SuperBug!

    SuperBug! Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 13, 2009

    I am so glad to hear that I'm not the only one! I really do want to connect with my principals, but it makes it difficult because I travel between two schools so I never really feel like I belong anywhere. I'm hoping to be in one school next year, so hopefully that will help too. Then I can make more "small talk" and that sort of thing. And, I really have to force myself to have more interaction, old habit has me hiding out in my room as much as I can (last year, with the crazy P, I played a game every day to see if I could get through the day without going into the office, LOL).

    Thanks for all of your input! :)
     
  12. janlee

    janlee Devotee

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2003
    Messages:
    1,157
    Likes Received:
    9

    May 13, 2009

    I've worked with 9 different principals thus far and have never suffered any type of phobia. Each one was different, too. Perhaps knowing that if something occurred that really rattled me I would have my union to turn to or the support of a great group of teachers. I've always been able to approach each and every principal speak to them as a professional and in doing so expected to be treated that way, too. Actually, my current principal is quite young (only one teacher is younger than she is) and she has turned to me asking for help in several areas.
     
  13. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,764
    Likes Received:
    1,723

    May 13, 2009

    Where did she go when she left? My school?
     
  14. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,764
    Likes Received:
    1,723

    May 13, 2009

    Yu can have her back. We're finished with her.
     
  15. SuperBug!

    SuperBug! Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 13, 2009

    LOL, she's still there, I'm actually the one that left. She must have an evil twin! :help:
     
  16. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2007
    Messages:
    17,362
    Likes Received:
    46

    May 13, 2009

    SuperBug, they must have been more than 2 because I swear she was in TX 3 years ago.
     
  17. Jem

    Jem Aficionado

    Joined:
    May 7, 2008
    Messages:
    3,544
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 13, 2009

    I think it makes a difference where in your career a principal like this falls. My first principal was my mother, so obviously I was quite comfortable around her. When she was moved to the middle school, her replacement was odd but still nice. Out here, I've gotten some really nasty ones. The first was a silent-but-deadly type, and the second was... well, read my posts from this fall. I'm approaching future principals with optimism, and I'm also taking it upon myself to help with the situation. Because I've seen great principals in action, I know they are out there and can believe when people on here say they are very happy at their schools. But experiencing my crazy mean last few principals, I also know what a snare they create, and have reflected on how I might have made that worse.

    Sidenote-when I got my call from the 'director' (principal) of the school I'm interviewing at today, she didn't even introduce herself but rather launched into asking how my move was going, la, la, la. THAT sounds like a great principal!! (but you never know)
     
  18. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2005
    Messages:
    2,079
    Likes Received:
    186

    May 13, 2009

    Make them the evil triplets because there was another one down here in south texas. I have principal phobia too. I know that there are good ones out there but I can't seem to find one that will hire me YET!:lol:
     
  19. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,764
    Likes Received:
    1,723

    May 13, 2009

    Have you heard of the Octo-P's?
     
  20. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2007
    Messages:
    17,362
    Likes Received:
    46

    May 13, 2009

    :lol: becky!

    Jem-I thought my second P(the witch) was going to be an awesome P because we got along great at the interview and the first few months of school....after that, watch out Nellie!
     
  21. Ron6103

    Ron6103 Habitué

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2008
    Messages:
    838
    Likes Received:
    7

    May 13, 2009

    I find myself quite thankful that I generally like my principal, and have a good relationship with him. I was very nervous around him at first, but that seems to have faded. The incident that really helped me was when I was worried about my job (because the teacher I replaced was considering coming back), and I was nervous about it for several days until I could schedule some time to ask my principal about it.

    After the conversation, he said "wow.... man... you were this worried for 3 days? don't worry, your job is fine.... and NEVER wait like that, if you need to talk to me, just call me" and then he gave me his cell phone number.

    So I'm considerably more relaxed now, and we're able to joke around with each other.
     
  22. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Messages:
    2,048
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 13, 2009

    Yeah, I think you can briing a little bit of anxiety in with you from whatever experience you've had with other principals or administrators. I taught HeadStart for 7 years before I worked at my school and I truly experienced back stabbing and a dislike towards me for no reason from my HS director. I would try to speak to her and she would give me the cold shoulder. Maybe because I was younger then and some people have their stereotypes about young people which definately did not pertain to me at all then. By the time I was hired at my current school and told her that I was leaving, she was actually disappointed and sad to see me go. Once again, I think because by then I had "proved" myself to her and she knew I was one of the best teachers she had. Oh well........too bad, too late!
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Cjb1999
Total: 203 (members: 2, guests: 184, robots: 17)
test